A Journey in to What It Means to Be Maori

July 24, 2000

In September the Summer Olympics will be taking place in Sydney, Australia. Aborigines have already begun their protest campaigns aimed to bring international attention to the situation they face with Black Deaths in Custody, the Stolen Generation and their struggle for land rights.

Meanwhile next door, Indigenous New Zealanders are hoping the international attention that Sydney will be receiving will shine on their situation as well. Among their demands are the preservation of their culture and language and the return of their land, Aotearoa.


  • B>Hinewirangi Kohu-Morgan, a Maori artist, poet and activist. For the past 20 years Hinewirangi has served as founding director of the Maori Woman’s Center instituting programs that help end domestic violence and rebuild Maori communities while promoting radical changes in the dominant political and economic system. She teaches both in New Zealand and abroad, conducting workshops on all aspects of Maori life. This weekend in Santa Fe New Mexico, Hinewirangi Kohu-Morgan spoke at a forum called Defending Cultural Freedom sponsored by the Lannan Foundation. In this address she discusses Maori culture, language and colonization.